The NBA still has a ton of important questions it needs to answer

Noah Levick
NBC Sports Philadelphia

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Tuesday night that owners and executives are feeling "increasingly positive about the league's momentum toward a resumption of play this season" after a call with NBA commissioner Adam Silver. 

Still, the volume of questions the league must answer before returning to play is massive.

On Wednesday's NBC Sports Lunch Talk Live, NBC Sports NBA insider Tom Haberstroh reviewed several of those issues. 

Where is that line going to be? … How many positive tests is OK, how many positive tests are not OK? Where that line is will determine so much. Is that going to be written in the contracts with the players? If X-number of players test positive, we have to shut down? There's a lot of gray area here that needs to be ironed out. And it's a stark difference from two months ago when on March 11, one player tested positive and everything shut down. That obviously has changed because the variable is they supposedly would have more testing.

Though financial ramifications are obviously a major motivator for all parties, the health and safety of everyone involved should be the primary concern. As Haberstroh said, it's currently unclear what exactly would happen if a player was to test positive and how the league, outside of increased testing, would go about mitigating risk in that situation.

For the time being, there are other important logistical questions related to the opening of practice facilities for voluntary individual workouts. The Sixers are not one of the NBA teams that have been able to open their facility, though general manager Elton Brand said last Tuesday the team had "backup plans" and named 76ers Fieldhouse in Wilmington, Delaware, as a possibility. Wojanrowski reported that "the league believes it will have 22 of its 30 facilities open by Monday."

"A lot of players are on different landscapes right now," Haberstroh said. "It's a very different scenario for each team and each market. Keep in mind, [Rockets head coach] Mike D'Antoni, [Spurs head coach] Gregg Popovich, [Pelicans head coach] Alvin Gentry are all north of 65 years old, so they're not allowed to be in the practice facilities. But when are they going to be allowed to coach their team? That's a very big question on the minds of a lot of people."

When will there be a resolution on the 2019-20 season? The Athletic's Shams Charania reported that Silver told owners he's "aiming for a decision in 2-to-4 weeks about whether to resume the season or cancel." According to Haberstroh, the decision-making process could take a while. 

"I think they're going to drag this out until the last second because I think they need to gather information, and that is at a premium right now," Haberstroh said. "Why do certain [people] have a severe reaction to COVID-19? Who will be in the bubble scenario, the proposed bubble scenario in either [Las] Vegas or in Atlantic City or Orlando, or perhaps all three? Who would be allowed? Would it be your parents, would it be your family? And what kind of financial ramifications are in play there? 

"So a lot of difficult questions are going to be asked in the next couple weeks, and I think Adam Silver has been consistent this entire time - they're going to take their time to figure this out. And what I'm hearing is in mid-June they're going to have to come to a decision on whether to give the green light or not to the rest of the season."

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The NBA still has a ton of important questions it needs to answer originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

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